Amidst the research being published on Third Culture Kids (TCKs) and the impact of global mobility on education, it’s sometimes easy to forget about the voices of the people we are researching and writing about—the kids themselves.
Valerie Besanceney has created a wonderful short chapter book that begins to provide words for a TCK experiences when he or she moves. The book follows the story of 10-year-old Emma through her international move from one home to another due to her father’s work relocation. It is written from the perspective of both Emma and interspersed with the thoughts of her stuffed bear, affectionately named “B.”
Through telling the story through both the eyes of Emma and B, Besanceney has been able to capture all angles of the moving experience—the impact of past moves, the uncertainty of a future move, and how Emma processes the entire situation. Besanceney skillfully brings up questions of rituals, friendships, changing schools, and creating a home, all of which are bound to run through the mind of any child who moves.
This book would be an excellent book for a parent and child to read together to help process an international move. Reading about Emma’s experience going through a similar transition will likely provide words for a TCK to begin processing a moving experience, opening up a conversation with parents. At the same time, it will remind the child that he or she is not alone in feeling this way. Parents may also glean ideas for how to make the transition easier by reading this book, whether it’s establishing a new ritual or creating a Moving Booklet similar to the one Emma receives in the story.
All in all, I would highly recommend this book to anyone with children and who is making an international move. Feel free to check it out on Amazon.